De­lays at lights are driv­ing peo­ple away

Fears for vil­lage shops on top of safety con­cerns

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - by Jack Abell jack.abell@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

CON­TIN­U­ING prob­lems with con­ges­tion caused by traf­fic lights could be the rea­son why peo­ple are de­sert­ing vil­lage shops.

The lights in Pack­horse Road, Ger­rards Cross, have gen­er­ated com­plaints about traf­fic de­lays since be­ing in­stalled in 2010.

There have also been con­cerns re­gard­ing safety for pedes­tri­ans. A sur­vey car­ried out two years ago found that nearly 90 per cent of the peo­ple in­ter­viewed be­lieved the area around the lights to be danger­ous.

The lat­est devel­op­ment is that peo­ple ap­pear to be stay­ing away from the vil­lage and do­ing their shop­ping else­where.

In a com­ment left on the Ger­rards Cross Parish Coun­cil web­site, Guy Emer­son, who lives in Pack­horse Road, said: “I am now giv­ing up shop­ping in Ger­rards Cross even though I live here.

“I shall be go­ing to Bea­cons­field and Amer­sham from now on.

“I queued for 10 min­utes to get into Ger­rards Cross this morn­ing – it’s quicker to walk.

“It’s a shame. Ger­rards Cross was get­ting bet­ter for shop­ping, but other towns are much bet­ter man­aged.”

Busi­nesses in the vil­lage are also con­cerned that the prob­lems ap­par­ently caused by the traf­fic lights could be af­fect­ing trade.

Rus­sell Lacey, who runs Des­bor­ough Pets, in Sta­tion Road, said: “If peo­ple are hav­ing to queue for a long time to get into the vil­lage and park be­fore they can do their shop­ping, then busi­nesses will suf­fer be­cause it will put peo­ple off.”

In Bea­cons­field, traders have said they have their own is­sues to con­tend with.

John Phillips, who works at Bea­cons­field Wine Cellars, in Old Town said: “There are on­go­ing prob­lems with park­ing here, which have been well doc­u­mented, which could be putting peo­ple off com­ing here.

“It’s dif­fi­cult to say for cer­tain if more peo­ple from Ger­rards Cross are shop­ping here. It’s pos­si­ble but it’s very hard to say for sure.”

Man­agers at Tesco in Ger­rards Cross have in­di­cated that the com­pany will con­trib­ute to the costs of im­prov­ing the traf­fic light sys­tem in Pack­horse Road.

Bucks County Coun­cil is also ex­pected to pro­vide some fund­ing to help solve the prob­lem.

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